The Loom House of the fictional Coleridge Plantation
A slave cabin at Sotterley Plantation in St. Mary's County, Maryland, served as the inspiration for what the structures on our Maryland plantation looked like.
Historic Sotterley Plantation, Facebook, January 7, 2015.
The interior of the slave cabin at Sotterley Plantation in St. Mary's County, Maryland, offered a view of the cramped space the enslaved had to live and work in.
Historic Sotterley Plantation, Facebook, April 1, 2015.
A slave cabin at Prestwould Plantation in Mecklenburg County, Virginia. Although this plantation was far bigger than the mid- to small-sized plantation we believe Anna lived and worked on, archaeological research of the site provides details such as pile locations, chimney placements, and exterior treatments.
"Prestwould slave quarter under restoration" in Patricia M. Samford, Archaeological Investigations of the Prestwould Slave Quarter, Mecklenburg County, Virginia (44MC534), Colonial Williamsburg Foundation Library Research Report Series (2001), 6.
Final Composite Scene
The final composite shot, based on the reference photos and archaeological information on slave quarters.
A video produced by George Washington's Mount Vernon provided a sense for how a counterbalance loom would have been used to produce linen. We assume this method was common for the production of fabrics throughout the region. It is widely understood that skills like weaving, blacksmithing, and horseshoeing were passed down from generation to generation.
George Washington's Mount Vernon, "Weaving on Mount Vernon's 18th Century Loom," YouTube, October 21, 2013.
Michael Burton created a 3D model of a loom house using looms created by users of the SketchUp 3D Warehouse. This model gave Burton the ability to select the best angles to shoot live actors using a reconstructed loom.
A loom constructed for the live video shoot.
Actress and screenwriter Kwakiutl Dreher taking direction from Michael Burton as she portrays Anna's mother, Nan.
Live action footage being rotoscope animated (top) and the final composited image (below).